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instant pot Butternut Squash Pasta served on plate with squash on side
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5 from 4 votes

Instant Pot Butternut Squash Pasta

A quick comforting, filling, and delicious pasta that is cheesy and creamy made with a seasonal ingredient– butternut squash!
Course Dinner, entree, Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Keyword butternut squash, gluten-free, healthy, instant pot, pasta recipes, vegetarian
Diet Vegetarian
Method Instant Pot/Pressure Cooker
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 3
Calories 280kcal
Author Bhavana Patil

Ingredients

Measuring cup used 1 cup = 250 ml

  • 8 ounce dry shell pasta (about 2.5-3 cups)
  • 3 cups cubed butternut squash peeled and deseeded
  • 3 cups water (to cook pasta)
  • 1 cup vegetable broth or water (to cook butternut squash)
  • 1 tablespoon butter or olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon garlic minced
  • ½ cup onion finely chopped
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese or any cheese
  • 1 tablespoon parsley or mixed dried herbs
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ cup milk or half and half (optional)

Instructions

Instant Pot Method:

  • Turn on the IP to 'Saute' mode. Add the butter, followed by the garlic and onions. Sauté for a few minutes till the onions turn translucent.
    step to dice butternut squash and saute garlic collage
  • Next, add the cubed butternut squash and stir it with the rest of the ingredients.
  • Add the vegetable broth or water, salt and mix well.
  • Meanwhile, in an oven-safe bowl or stackable steamer, insert pans add 3 cups of pasta with 3 cups of water, and keep aside. Make sure pasta should be submerged in liquid.
  • Then place the trivet and then the bowl of dried pasta with water. This way, they will both cook together. See pictures below for reference.
    step to add butternut squash nad cook pasta pot in pot collage
  • Close the lid of the Instant Pot. Set the cooking time for 4 minutes (or half the time on the macaroni cooking directions minus 1 minute).
  • Once the IP beeps, do a QUICK RELEASE.
  • Open the lid and, using an immersion blender, puree squash with some milk till smooth and creamy. OR you can also puree the squash in a regular blender or Vitamix.
    step to puree the squash collage
  • Now add the cooked pasta followed by cheese, seasoning, salt, pepper powder. Stir constantly until cheese is melted and everything is combined.
    step to add cooked pasta to puree collage
  • Serve pasta topped with more Parmesan cheese and parsley.
    instant pot Butternut Squash Pasta served on plate with squash on side

Stovetop Pot Method:

  • Cook the pasta according to the package instructions. Drain and set aside.
  • Meanwhile, peel the butternut squash and remove the seeds. Cut into large chunks.
  • Heat the butter in a pan or skillet over medium low heat.
  • Add some minced garlic and onion saute till turn translucent.
  • Then add the squash, salt, and water, cook until completely tender. Place the squash mixture into the blender along with some salt and pepper and pulse until smooth.
  • Pour the sauce over the cooked pasta and add the cheese. Stir until melted. Add more salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve pasta topped with more Parmesan cheese and parsley.

Notes

I have prepared this dish in my electric pressure cooker, Instant Pot DUO60 6 QT.
 

Tips

  • Pasta cooking time: The time to cook pasta in an Instant pot is usually half of the suggested time on the pasta box minus 1 minute for al-dente pasta ( if you like your pasta firm and are just done). For example, I made this recipe using a dry shell which called for 10 minutes of cooking time. That makes it 4 minutes going by the rule of thumb.
  • Keep pasta submerged: You have to make sure that all the pasta is submerged in the liquid before pressure cooking. If it is less, then add some more water or broth
  • Pressure Release: Quick Release is very important for cooking pasta in the Instant Pot. So don’t forget else it will result in very soft pasta.
  • Seasoning: I have used dried Italian herbs for seasoning but you could use freshly chopped parsley or sage.
 

Variations

  • Adding milk while pureeing butternut squash sauce is completely optional.
  • You can also add steamed broccoli florets in this pasta, in the end, to make it more healthy and delicious.
  • You can also use frozen butternut squash for this recipe.
  • This pasta can also be made using roasted butternut squash.
 
Note: Nutrition values are my best estimates. If you rely on them for your diet, use your preferred nutrition calculator.

Nutrition

Calories: 280kcal | Carbohydrates: 39g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 5mg | Sodium: 486mg | Potassium: 344mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 8650IU | Vitamin C: 25.4mg | Calcium: 200mg | Iron: 2.8mg